Sunday, November 06, 2011

Melanie Phillips - 'Bigot of the Year'

This is guest post by Rev'd Julian Mann:

Melanie Phillips's Jewishness is a significant contributing factor to her being voted Bigot of the Year by gay rights group Stonewall.

Whatever the precise nature of the lady's own personal faith, her moral values as reflected in her writings are manifestly rooted in the Jewish religion in which she was brought up. Specifically her view that heterosexual marriage should be upheld as the social norm is grounded in the Jewish Scriptures with whose spiritual and moral influence she identifies in her self-description as a Jew and in her support for the State of Israel.

So, it was not only the Daily Mail, Spectator and Jewish Chronicle columnist herself who was put in the stocks by the politically-correct establishment gathered at London's Victoria and Albert Museum. Stonewall was also pillorying the sacred Scriptures of her people.

The first book of the Torah, Genesis, describes God's creation of mankind as male and female and sets forth an account of the institution of heteresexual marriage, including the programmatic statement quoted in the New Testament by Jesus Christ: 'Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh' (Gen 2:24). It is that foundational teaching in Genesis that underpins the Torah's disapproval of homosexuality as expressed in the book of Leviticus.

Melanie Phillips herself is a long way from taking a strictly Levitical stance on homosexuality. She supports the decriminalisation of homosexuality that the UK Parliament enacted in the 1960s and denounces ill treatment of homosexual people.

What won her the Stonewall award was an article in January's Daily Mail headlined: 'Yes, gays have often been the victims of prejudice. But they now risk becoming the new McCarthyites'. In it, she argued:
As the old joke has it, what was once impermissible first becomes tolerated and then becomes mandatory.

And the other side of that particular coin, as we are now discovering, is that values which were once the moral basis for British society are now deemed to be beyond the pale.

What was once an attempt to end ­unpleasant attitudes towards a small sexual minority has now become a kind of bigotry in reverse.

Expressing what used to be the moral norm of Western civilisation is now not just socially impermissible, but even turns upstanding people into lawbreakers.

The bed and breakfast hoteliers Peter and Hazelmary Bull — who were recently sued for turning away two homosexuals who wished to share a bedroom — were but the latest religious believers to fall foul of the gay inquisition merely for upholding ­Christian values.
In the light of her own anathema by the PC establishment, her remarks are disturbingly prescient.

Furthermore, on the principle that there is about a 20-year timelag between what the gay rights lobby blesses or curses and what the British State makes mandatory, 2031 could well be when newspapers that advocate Judaeo-Christian moral values, such as the Daily Mail, are banned.

So, the ungentlemanly treatment of Melanie Phillips by Stonewall bodes ill for freedom of expression in the United Kingdom.

Julian Mann is vicar of the Parish Church of the Ascension, Oughtibridge, South Yorkshire

84 Comments:

Blogger Flossie said...

'Ungentlemanly'? I call it downright bigoted.

6 November 2011 at 10:27  
Blogger john in cheshire said...

So, Stonewall don't want tolerance, they want power; to impose their own worldview. I hope Melanie Phillips wears her award as a badge of pride. And maybe one day there will be an annual bigot parade so we can show the country that we're here and we're not going away.

6 November 2011 at 10:30  
Blogger Willie said...

Could we ensure all immigrants are homosexual?

6 November 2011 at 10:38  
Blogger bluedog said...

Your Grace, and your own ranking in the Bigot of the Year comp was....?

6 November 2011 at 10:43  
Blogger Harry-ca-Nab said...

'Ungentlemanly'?

You can say that again, girlfriend!

Were it not for the unchallenged prevalence of anti-semitism I'm sure you would have snatched the award Your Grace.

You were robbed.

6 November 2011 at 10:45  
Blogger graham wood said...

J in C "I hope Melanie Phillips wears her award as a badge of pride."

I agree John. MP has been consistently logical in all her articles on this matter.
To some degree the centre of controversy has moved away from homosexuality per se, and towards the persecution and criminalisation of dissent from "gay" orthodoxy.
The "gay" lobby world-wide will not rest content until all criticism of their ideology is prohibited by law, and therefore criminalised. The Bull's case is but one of many.
Their campaign will not end until Christians, and other traditionalists opposing homosexuality are shut up, discredited, and utterly silenced.

The issue is no longer about "gay rights", as one writer points out.
It is about "re-defining truth and censoring all criticism, so that militant homosexuals can be comfortable in their 'lifestyle' without having to be disturbed by reality"

All of this is now official policy of the Conservative party which is about to attempt to re-define the historic concept of norma heterosexual marriage (to include same sex partners).
Cameron justifies this, as he said in his conference speech, "BECAUSE I'm a Conservative"

6 November 2011 at 10:48  
Blogger Gnostic said...

Typical Stonewall. No one is allowed to have an opinion that goes against their agenda. Anyone who does is accused of being a bigot.

Clearly Stonewall and it's coterie of Rainbow militant tendencies, does not understand the irony of the situation. High time the government showed this circus of self-righteous morons the door along with all the other politically correct pressure groups and new puritans.

6 November 2011 at 11:18  
Blogger Jimbo said...

Poor Mel, she has just been branded by the Gay Inquisition.

6 November 2011 at 11:26  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

MP (quoted): "The bed and breakfast hoteliers Peter and Hazelmary Bull — who were recently sued for turning away two homosexuals who wished to share a bedroom — were but the latest religious believers to fall foul of the gay inquisition merely for upholding ­Christian values."

They ran a hotel as a business. A business regulated by various Acts, including ones to do with the supply of goods and services to the public. Had they turned away a black British couple and put a "No blacks, No Irish, No Dogs" sign up because they don't agree with past immigration policies then they wouldn't have been merely upholding their opinions. Neither would it had Ms Phillips tried to stay and they put up a sign saying "No Jews". The Bulls can hold whatever opinions they like but if they act on them in the regulated public space then they may fall foul of the law just like the rest of us. If the Bulls are so obsessed about what might happen sexually in one of their hotel rooms then they should probably choose a profession which relies rather less on beds.

Mann: "So, the ungentlemanly treatment of Melanie Phillips by Stonewall bodes ill for freedom of expression in the United Kingdom."

They're obviously very uncouth for not taking Phillip's gender into account? Is that what that means?

6 November 2011 at 11:27  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Excellent summary of the marginalisation and creeping 'criminalisation' of Judeo-Christian beliefs and values.

I agree Melanie Phillip should be proud of her achievement. Was she invited to receive her acolade?

Can I ask why Church leaders didn't win? Were any nominated?

6 November 2011 at 11:28  
Blogger john in cheshire said...

As an afterthought, if Stonewall wish to relive their glory years as a genuine movement that improves the situation of real people (which is what it did when it was founded) then they would direct their attentions to the real culprit of our times; namely, islam and the attitude of its followers to Gay and Lesbian people. I suspect that's because it's too difficult and dangerous.

6 November 2011 at 11:43  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

I've reread the article two or three times now and the Jewishness thing is still jarring. What's the point of that? Isn't that Mann basically saying: "Hey Jews! This lot over here are wazzing all over your sacred thingies. Omg, it's anti-Jewish! Yes! Anti-Jewish!"

6 November 2011 at 11:52  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

bluedog said...

"Your Grace, and your own ranking in the Bigot of the Year comp was....?"

That'll have to wait until Opus Dei have their ceremony early in the New Year.

(I jest Mr Cranmer!)

6 November 2011 at 11:57  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

What an honour. Congratulations to Melanie.

William Booth used to tell his young salvationists to wear the spit they received upon their uniforms as they marched as medals of honour.

We should simply get all the Christian press to re-brand these accolades as prestigious "Defender of the Faith Awards". I wonder how many C of E clergy would make the short list?!

Apparently Jesus himself won the Pharisees "False Prophet of the Year" award 30AD!

6 November 2011 at 11:57  
Blogger Albert said...

Stonewall produce such awards because they do not openly wish to oppose freedom of speech. So the award is intended to have the same effect. If they thought they could win the argument they wouldn't need such awards.

Dan, there is no moral parity between being black and a homosexual relationship. They're not in the same logical category. To suggest that they are is itself a kind of racism, I think.

6 November 2011 at 12:11  
Blogger OldSlaughter said...

"Stonewall was also pillorying the sacred Scriptures of her people."

Surely Leviticus deserves pillory? How can it not. Why the a la carte reading of it?

6 November 2011 at 12:13  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Albert, you're slewing it there.

6 November 2011 at 12:16  
Blogger martin sewell said...

Speaking of the proposition that people should be judged irrespective of the colour if their skin (and with specific reference to positive discrimination) the brilliant black Educationalist Thomas Sowell has observed that what made you a dangerous radical in the 1960's mafe you a mainstreamer in the 1980's and a reactionary Conservative by 1990.

The same is sadly true on this issue. Once the Gay lobby argued that what they did in private was nobody else's business: now everyone is forced to approve. This is madness, intolerant and bullying. Whether I approve gay relationships is 90% none of my business and 10 % none of yours.

6 November 2011 at 12:29  
Blogger David B said...

My comment, written an hour or so ago, seems to have fallen foul of the internet gremlins.

Rather than re-write it, I shall just say that DanJO covered most of the points I made in it.

David B

6 November 2011 at 12:29  
Blogger David B said...

One point he missed, though, is that a far more immediate and pressing concern about what might be called the PC brigade is that there is a tendency to look at religious texts, whether they be Jewish, Christian, Islamic or whatever as something which it is offensive to criticise.

David B

6 November 2011 at 12:32  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

David B, I was in the process of writing that there's some sort of reification of religious values going on here. :) They're essentially shared opinions, albeit deeply held ones. We put a lot of stock in freedom of conscience but it doesn't mean that conscientious objections are right, or that objections are always the result of conscience.

6 November 2011 at 12:46  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

@Danj0:

How do you determine what is right within the context of conscientious objections?

Isn't the point of them that you have a reason to depart from a collective point of view because of conscience - which by its very nature is entitled to dispute that which it is told to uphold?

I'm not sure that anyone can convicingly apply a model which indicates what is a correct conscientious objection and what is an incorrect conscientious objection without entirely devaluing the concept.

6 November 2011 at 13:39  
Blogger Jon said...

I voted in this award - there were a few people nominated, and I honestly can't remember if I voted for Melanie or not. If I did so, I can honestly say that her race had absolutely nothing to do with it.

She (and many here) hold views that people like DanJ0 and myself are going to hell for something we didn't choose. That's the ultimate sanction in your book - and her half- hearted "support" is just that. (But as OldSlaughter points out, the same people are happy to read the rest of Leviticus like it's pretty much optional). Or have used later theological devices about the differing gradations of sin to support their prejudices.

So, if I voted for her, it would have been out of disdain her for her original condemnation of me and my kind - but it's Palin-esque to suggest that criticising her for her opinions is the original sin here!

I am pleased that Melanie has the freedom to say the things that she says - whilst obviously disappointed that she takes her pulpit to make people feel bad about something inherent in them. But then Stonewall is free to say the things that it says, and so are it's members. She can adhere to her sacred texts as selectively read, and i'll adhere to my conscience and will vote in future Stonewall surveys accordingly.

6 November 2011 at 13:58  
Blogger len said...

'A bigot is a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices, especially one exhibiting intolerance, and animosity toward those of differing beliefs'.

Seems to fit Stonewall perfectly perhaps someone could arrange an award?.

6 November 2011 at 14:09  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Jon

Address the central points of the blog:

- what was once impermissible first becomes tolerated and then becomes mandatory.

- that values which were once the moral basis for British society are now deemed to be beyond the pale.

- attempts to end ­unpleasant attitudes towards a small sexual minority has now become a kind of bigotry in reverse.

Theses are the points - not whether anyone thinks you might be going to hell or makes you feel bad.

6 November 2011 at 14:12  
Blogger Flossie said...

Let's all write to Stonewall applying for consideration for next year's award.

If we are not considered high profile enough, then that makes them elitist as well as being bigoted, Judophobic and Christophobic, and presumably Isamophobic too.

Dodo - Other contenders who lost out were Scottish entrepreneur and Section 28 backer Brian Souter, who was knighted this year; Christian Voice leader Stephen Green and the Rt Rev Arthur Roche, a previous nominee who campaigned for adoption agencies to be allowed to bar gay people.

http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2011/11/04/melanie-phillips-voted-stonewalls-bigot-of-the-year/

(Some interesting comments from Pink News readers, too.)

Previous award winners have included Anthony Priddis, Bishop of Hereford, Jan Moir, Iris Robinson and Chris Grayling.

6 November 2011 at 14:20  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

@Jon:

I'd agree absolutely with your remarks about conscience, and fully applaud them.

For the sake of clarity however (and therefore @Old Slaughter too):

While I'm aware that the "pick and choose from Leviticus" argument is pretty current in voices opposed to certain elements of Christian thought, I really must point out that as it is framed, it is a fallacy.

Firstly, while the quotes from Leviticus traditionally invoke the word "abomination", and are thus more rhetorically powerful, it is hardly the case that the only Scriptural evidence for prohibiting same-sex activity is found in the Old Testament - so even if you were holding to the notion that the OT is irrelevant except in its whole, there would be plenty from the NT (in fact more) to support the premise.

Secondly, as anyone who has read the NT will know, there is a difference between cultural laws (not eating Shellfish) and moral laws in Christian (if not Jewish) thought. The NT writers fairly consistently uphold the definition of marriage (confirmed as Christ as being between a man and a woman) as part of the latter subset. Thus, there is a perfectly coherent line of argument to citing Leviticus' moral laws while not practicing its cultural ones.

However, what I will observe is that there is a "pick and choose" element when it comes to exclusively identifying same-sex activity as sexual immorality. Because if you hold to either of the positions I've outlined above, you should concede that *any* sexual immorality, including looking at a woman lustfully, is of the same order as adultery, for which the penalty is death. Thus, there are certain loud voices who are indeed being hypocritical in directing their attention solely at same-sex activity.

I don't see why Christians shouldn't seek to correct this kind of thought wherever they encounter it. Those Christians who target homosexual people repeatedly and insistently as if they constitute a special category of sinners, are the Pharisees reborn, with unremoved logs in their eyes. But this doesn't mean that we are obliged to accept the secular assertion that all forms of (legal) sexual activity are "good" (or "healthy" or "natural"). Scripture makes it unambiguously clear that all human sexuality needs redemption - and for the majority of Christians, that can only occur within the marriage bed.

6 November 2011 at 14:21  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

AnonymousInBelfast: "How do you determine what is right within the context of conscientious objections?"

Personally I don't have much of a problem but I'd struggle to convince everyone of my determination. What I can say is that conscience is obviously not the final arbiter in these things. For example, my conscience troubles me about the conditioning of children by religious schools. Clearly the consciences of other people are quite clear on the same matter. Hence, we use other values as well to arbitrate.

In the case of the Bulls, no-one was forcing them to share a bed with the two men, or take part in any gay sex that might have happened, or watch it if it did. They could quite happily uphold their religious convictions within the sphere of their private lives. But they unilaterally tried to impose it onto others and claimed victimhood when they were pulled up on it. That's not conscientious objection.

6 November 2011 at 14:31  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Jon: "I am pleased that Melanie has the freedom to say the things that she says [...]"

Me too. Exercising her freedom in this case probably paid quite well too, which is always a bonus. She's paid to pander to the opinions and swivel-eyed prejudices of the Daily Mail readership and she delivers very well in true tabloid style by the look of it. I expect she just shrugs off her image as a joyless right-wing moaner, and good on her if she does. My friends and I have a regular competition on the Mail site to see who can get the highest number of red arrows by upsetting the swivel-eyed without getting banned. My friend Amanda is an olympic-quality player. I'm quite in awe of her. We're all winners with the Daily Mail, albeit for different reasons. :)

6 November 2011 at 14:45  
Blogger Oswin said...

Len: quite so.

6 November 2011 at 14:49  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Your Grace

Those that regularly follow your blog will understand that the Inspector is supportive of homosexuals up to a point. After all, they didn’t sign up for a heterosexual conversion course to get to being gay.

However, he has continually advised them against their more extreme desires, gay marriage and gay adoption for example, to stop them being pilloried in the press, and God forbid, in the street. Newton had it right. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Todays opposite reaction is Melanie Phillips.

For the quiet gay life – vote “Inspector” every time.

6 November 2011 at 14:49  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

AiB

Well said, but could you clarify the following:

" ... all human sexuality needs redemption - and for the majority of Christians, that can only occur within the marriage bed."

6 November 2011 at 15:01  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

"I've reread the article two or three times now and the Jewishness thing is still jarring. What's the point of that? Isn't that Mann basically saying: "Hey Jews! This lot over here are wazzing all over your sacred thingies. Omg, it's anti-Jewish! Yes! Anti-Jewish!"

DanJ0,

Melanie Phillips, as you surely mus know, is also guilty of being a staunch Zionist and the author of the game-changing Londonistan. For inexplicable reasons, the various international gay movements have been openly and loudly siding with the most extreme Islamist positions against Israel...the only nation in the Middle East which has adopted Gay rights policies and doesn't imprison, stone, torture or behead Gays. You may choose to believe that this is a coincidence; I don't.

6 November 2011 at 15:12  
Blogger len said...

Are some sins more important than others and singled out for' special condemnation' ?(with regard to homosexuality)

God`s solution for the fallen nature of man is a drastic one, He doesn`t intend to retrain fallen man,or teach him to be 'good'or by self effort to overcome his 'sinful nature'. God`s remedy for fallen man is far more drastic and totally effective. God`s estimation of fallen man is that he is totally irredeemable so fallen man was crucified (in Christ)
God brought the 'old creation' to an end (in Christ.)All the attributes which God calls sin are attributes of the 'old creation'.

So he that is 'IN Christ ' is resurrected,he is a new creation ,he belongs to the new creation,born from above , from the Spirit of God.

Fallen man,natural man,devoid of the spirit of God is as Adam became after the fall (adam is also the masculine form of the word adamah which means ground or earth.)He is literally ' from the Earth', and he follows his 'natural' earthly (separate from God) instincts.

ALL that is in the 'old creation' sins because it is its nature to do so! the list of sins are as described in the Bible (which are quite extensive)

6 November 2011 at 15:14  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Avi: "You may choose to believe that this is a coincidence; I don't."

*shrug* I have no idea either way.

6 November 2011 at 15:28  
Blogger Jon said...

Avi - I'm afraid I'm completely unsure where you're getting your ideas from about the "various international gay movements".

You may not know that in London, a young muslim man was recently convicted of sticking stickers up in Whitechapel saying things like "gay free zone". Stonewall naturally condemned it.

A mistake that appears to be common amongst commenters this blog is that every argument only has two sides - and one must always define oneself in opposition to one if one is to be able to participate. I can disagree with you, and with radical muslims at the same time, and still be content and consistent!

Dodo - as for your assertion that homosexuality is becoming mandatory - I don't see this happening. It's not something that Stonewall campaigns for either. Perhaps you're referring to the packs that Stonewall distributed to Schools. I've seen them (and I'm guessing you haven't), and just as when I sat my GCSEs, we had mathematical problems featuring Janet and John, as well as Manjit and Samina, Stonewall has suggested that schools feature problems with same sex parents. It's not brainwashing, it's not a sinister plot to overthrow the heterosexual order and establish mandatory homosexuality - it's a way to ensure that kids receive exposure to a possibility which could help them to understand that some families are different which could make the lives of some kids easier. I don't see why you're so threatened by that?

As for the idea that "the values which were once the basis for British society are now beyond the pale" - which values are you talking about?

The values which I consider British - free speech, freedom of thought and assembly and freedom of conscience aren't being overthrown by Stonewall either. Melanie is exercising hers, and Stonewall are exercising theirs. Rightwingers are always complaining that the left tries to shut down debate by labelling their opponents - but since many commenters here revel in the title bigot as applied to Melanie, perhaps it's you and your kind who are guilty of trying to shut down the debate by attributing this award to antisemitism?

That's not very British of you!

6 November 2011 at 15:49  
Blogger Jon said...

Avi, in my view Israel is to be commended for its gay rights policies.

But you must understand that if some gay people choose to take a differing view from you on the Israel/ Palestinian issues of the day, this doesn't mean that they aren't still happy about Israel's policies on gay people.

Israel doesn't have these policies because it wants to buy the support of the "international gay movements" (whatever they are!), it should have them because they think that they're the right thing to do, or they are betraying their citizens.

If some of Israel's actions in it's back yard are wrong (and I'm not informed enough to say whether they are or not), its policies on gay people don't excuse it from criticism by gay people - that's not how democracy works!

6 November 2011 at 15:54  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

To counter balance her “prestigious” Stonewall award she should be nominated and hopefully win next years Orwell Award for honesty and clarity in her public language.

6 November 2011 at 16:21  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Jon

If you actually took the trouble to read the blog (!) you'd have noticed the arguments you attribute to me actually came from our guest, Rev'd Julian Mann. How rude of you not to pay her the common curtesy of reading her post before deciding to disagree. Do you do this a lot?

6 November 2011 at 16:30  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Jon,

It's not a case of "some gay people [choosing] to take a differing view from [me] on the Israel/ Palestinian issues of the day" that's an issue for me. It's a case of mainstream Gay organizations officially sharing and promoting anti-Israel and anti-Jewish platforms of the extreme left and right, not to mention the Islamists. This is why I believe Melanie won the "award" over thousands of others with similar views.

6 November 2011 at 16:43  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Dodo,

The name Julian is a male one. I made a similar error once and wound up with egg on my face.

6 November 2011 at 16:45  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

len

Ooooops! Thank you, Sir.

Apologies Rev'd Mann.

6 November 2011 at 16:56  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Avi

For some inexplicable reason I posted the above to weatsop!

Apologies and thank you for putting me right.

6 November 2011 at 16:58  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

@Danj0:

I tend to agree with you on the case of the Bulls - insofar as it seems that they only inquired about the sexual activity of same-sex couples. One would think that they should have done the same with heterosexual couples to ensure that no extra-marital sex was occurring. Anecdotally, if you went to stay in places like rural Italy not so long ago, it was not uncommon for couples to have to show passports to hotelliers to demonstrate their marital status.

But the issue of conscientious objection is confused if we assume that it can solely exist as a legal term. I think, if I've understood you correctly, your argument is that they should not be entitled to use conscientious objection as a defence against breaching legislation. Clearly the courts agreed with you. I think though, this partially misses the point. If I am ever conscripted I will conscientiously object. If the choice is then put before me that I will go to prison as a result of this objection, I will reluctantly go to prison. I have no desire to go to prison - I believe that my conscience is correct in refusing to fight and therefore does not justify punishment, but because of this belief, I am willing to accept unjust punishment. Presently, I believe, the courts would allow my conscientious objection on this issue - so there is scope to incorporate it into law.

The question that is posed by our debate, is whether or not a person's conscientious objection to the broad concensus on modern sexuality can be justifiably accounted for in law. There are many who will still conscientiously object even if the law does not allow it as grounds for justification - because for them, it is an issue of conscience.

Personally, I tend to believe that there is reasonable grounds to insisting that everyone is treated equally in the provision of services - and if only same-sex couples are targeted, this is in breach. I am far less convinced of the grounds to insist that the prevailing concepts of acceptance of certain forms of sexuality should require the obligatory agreement of all citizens. The first is about equality before the law, the second is about entitlement to hold beliefs contrary to others (and implicitly to the dominant belief).

6 November 2011 at 17:01  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Avi: "This is why I believe Melanie won the "award" over thousands of others with similar views."

I'd have given it to Jan Muir again. She deserved two of them first time around. She once publicly ate a bagel I think and therefore she was instantly targetted by Stonewall, it being a member of this international gay movement. It was nothing to do with Stephen Gately at all.

6 November 2011 at 17:10  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

@Dodo:

That because humans are fallen by nature, every aspect of their being, including their sexuality, is in need of redemption. Fallen means departed from/contrary to the Will of God. The sacrament of marriage is provided by Grace to bring couples together in a way that both pleases the Will of God, and restores the couple (insamuch as it restores their sexuality) to a non-fallen state.

I said "for the majority of Christians" simply as a means of acknowledging the fact that there are people who identify as Christians who refute this view - albeit as a minority. Personally, I am stumped as to how one can chuck out Church teaching and Scripture and still believe that they are in full concord with the Will of God. But there are those who persist in such thought.

I am not aversed, however, to considering things that may be complementary to Scripture - I'm not a sola scriptura person. I'm just sceptical about theology that directly contradicts it, or seeks to diminish its authority. Thus, I am willing to consider thoughtful, Scripturally sound arguments for the inclusion of same-sex marriages (as we've discussed before). But I haven't heard many that do so without violating the principles above, and I would concede that there is a considerably possibility that such arguments are impossible. I don't think that means we shouldn't exhaust the possibility though.

6 November 2011 at 17:12  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

AIB: "I think, if I've understood you correctly, your argument is that they should not be entitled to use conscientious objection as a defence against breaching legislation."

Not quite. Doctors can refuse to perform abortions on the grounds of conscience. Conscripts can refuse to fight in wars on the grounds of conscience. I hope and trust vicars will be able to refuse to marry gay people in churches on the grounds of conscience. In all these cases, the people are being forced to actively do something themselves unless they can justify not doing so and we make allowances were we can. The Bulls were not in that situation. Moreover, they refused to take the alternative course of action. Like you, I'd go to prison rather than fight in a war which I thought was immoral and/or unnecessary. I'd like to think I'd face a firing squad if necessary but, well, who knows.

6 November 2011 at 17:21  
Blogger Roy said...

Does Stonewall get any money from the government? Does it have any representatives on the Equalities Commission, or whatever that body is called today?

These are not rhetorical questions. I simply think that if taxpayers are funding an agenda that most of them would oppose then we should be told.

Of course the members and supporters of Stonewall are perfectly entitled to campaign for changes in the law, just as their critics are perfectly entitled to oppose them.

6 November 2011 at 17:34  
Blogger David Lindsay said...

Is there another practising Reform Jew who takes her view, either on this or on Israel? On The Moral Maze, I have heard her as "just embarrassing", but lots of Orthodox Jews agree with her about homosexuality. A certain number of Orthodox and lots of secular Jews agree with her about Israel. Among the Reform, however, her position must be as good as unique.

Following her identification of any and everything on the neoconservative hate list as an expression of anti-Semitism, perhaps we shall see the conversion of neoconservatives to some sort of Judaism, identifying the philosophical, theological and ethical resources of Judaism as providing the necessary weapons against such things. Julie Burchill has already made noises of this kind. Those who declared themselves Jews in order to provide a spiritual or ritual framework for their neoconservatism would be most unlikely to trouble the Orthodox.

But they and the average Reform rabbi or congregant would hardly be each other’s obvious best fits, either; on the contrary, although it still struggles to be heard, there is at present a quiet revival of Reform Judaism’s classical definition of Jews as a religious community rather than as an ethnic group, and of its classical rejection of any return to Palestine as surely as of any restoration of animal sacrifice. Orthodox Judaism’s classical position is that Zionism is a blasphemous pre-emption of the Messiah. So, without necessarily involving the lady personally, will we be seeing new, Phillipsian synagogues springing up?

We are about due some fresh expressions of the entrepreneurial popular religious revival that is very much a recurring theme in our history. Might this be one of them?

6 November 2011 at 17:40  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

By the way, will we be quoted in the Daily Mail after all this? I will get maximum kudos if so.

6 November 2011 at 17:47  
Blogger non mouse said...

Thank you for your post, Rev'd. Mann. ... and my very best to that lovely bit of the world you're in :)

As for Ms. Phillips- While I'm no fan, I do support her right to expression; and I agree she should wear her badge with pride! Indeed, I'm glad Israel has such a high-profile spokesperson.

Incidentally - Speccie's Coffeehouse hasn't run her blog for a while now.

6 November 2011 at 18:38  
Blogger Jon said...

Dodo - did you want me to reply or are you too ashamed?

Yes, I read the post, and I responded to it, and your post at 14.12 - by reposting the key points you had carefully selected, I assumed you subscribed to them.

What's more, I knew the gender of the person that posted it. And that's whooping your ass!

DanJ0 at 17.10 - hilarious!! I don't think Jan was on the list or I'd have voted for her instead. I am partial to a bagel myself, although the fact I also like humus should save my skin from a lynching at the hands of the "International Gay Fraternity for the abolition of heterosexuality and the establishment of a Caliphate".

6 November 2011 at 19:15  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

DanJ0 said ...

"My friends and I have a regular competition on the Mail site to see who can get the highest number of red arrows by upsetting the swivel-eyed without getting banned ... We're all winners with the Daily Mail, albeit for different reasons."

And you acccuse me of poor blog etiquette! How many of your little clones are on here playing games? Let's see if we can spot them.

At least I say what's on my mind and, despite what some might think, do not deliberately set out to cause offence.

6 November 2011 at 19:23  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

DanJ0,

I had to look up Jan Moir(sic.) and Stephen Gately to figure out what you're talking about. As much as I'd like to imagine otherwise, it seems that I'm not current on current affairs, especially European ones. Didn't get the bagel reference for a while, as that product is so ubuquitous and universally liked in Toronto (except in my case alone, it seems), that I totally forgot about its Jewish connection. Please don't make work so hard on a lazy Sunday afternoon, DanJ0.

Nevertheless, the difference between Moir's and Phillips's "misdeeds" is vast. One expressed a tasteless, ignorant opinion at a sensitive time, the other a legitimate and moderate difference in positions which, acording to another post of yours, you appear to tolerate. I still happen to think that had Phillips been a vocal "anti-Zionist," or a Muslim, she wouldn't have even made the short list.

6 November 2011 at 19:44  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "And you acccuse me of poor blog etiquette! How many of your little clones are on here playing games? Let's see if we can spot them."

None. There's only one of me as I'm sure the blog owner can verify and there are none of my facebook friends here. I could easily bring a load over but it doesn't seem very fair to the blog owner as it's his personal work. Tempting though it was, I even made a point of not doing so some time ago when Marie was being at her most homophobic as it would have been a bloodbath. All that said, I'm more than happy to play around on the professionally moderated comments section of a national newspaper like the Daily Mail.

6 November 2011 at 20:49  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6 November 2011 at 21:20  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

I was tempted to comment on that too. :)

6 November 2011 at 21:25  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Jon said ...

"What's more, I knew the gender of the person that posted it. And that's whooping your ass!"

Oh, I do hope not. You might enjoy it, I most certainly would not. I'm sure the Rev'd Julian took no offence.

I do indeed subscribe to the views posted. Your response didn't address these at all. Just some 'woe is me' emotional drivel because Melanie and others were supposedly threatening you with hell and trying to make you feel bad for a tendency you were born with. Poor you.

The central issue is whether 'we', the majority who still hold onto 'traditional' values, have to adapt to and accomodate your minority sexual preferences despite believing it to be immoral. Why should the state be involved in imposing an alien morality when the implications of doing so extend beyond the civil and secular realm?

6 November 2011 at 21:41  
Blogger Jon said...

Dodo - no, actually the article was about poor, highly paid professional irritant, Melanie Philips, getting nominated for an award mocking her views by a charity. And then it went on to suggest that the charity (and presumably those who voted) did so because Philips is Jewish. It then goes on to explain that this is related to her adherence to sacred texts, but could of course be read as a clumsy accusation of anti-semitism. But let's assume the Reverend meant to criticise the charity's criticism of her beliefs rather than race.

The only bit that meets your tin- foil hat reading is the penultimate paragraph -

"Furthermore, on the principle that there is about a 20-year timelag between what the gay rights lobby blesses or curses and what the British State makes mandatory, 2031 could well be when newspapers that advocate Judaeo-Christian moral values, such as the Daily Mail, are banned."

In response, I confirmed that I support Melanie's rights to free speech, but there is a parallel between the reverend's (in my view, ambitious extrapolation that ridicule will lead to prohibition) and in the paragraph" So, the ungentlemanly treatment of Melanie Phillips by Stonewall bodes ill for freedom of expression in the United Kingdom." and the way that this award is greeted by your confreres as evidence of a conspiracy in order to silence legitimate criticism of her writing.

What's more I couldn't help but laugh at your "woe is me" reading. I'm not upset to be gay. I rather like it actually. It means I pretty much own the mainstream media, am always having fun plotting the overthrow of capitalism and the nuclear family and I get better clothes and I don't age as quickly as you. More seriously, I'm not worried about me, I'm more concerned about kids in schools who are taunted about their homosexuality and have a propensity to kill themselves, and therefore whether it's a good idea to make that problem worse with columns of the type she writes.

But your posts reek of the martyrdom too - or hadn't you noticed? Your assertion about "we the majority" isn't born out by opinion polling.

And since you don't care to accept my "minority sexual preference" I think I'll choose not to accept your minority theological deviance! (Although if I was you, I'd be concerned for your soul. Given your difficulty discerning men from women, I do hope that Mrs Dodo isn't of the male persuasion and you've been sinning by accident!)

6 November 2011 at 23:29  
Blogger raggedclown said...

Phillips was given this award, which is obviously much-chased-after in the conservative blogging community, not for opposing gay marriage - Stonewall itself does not advocate that, being satisfied with civil partnerships -- but for consistently demonizing gay people. For her, they are never individuals, but always the faceless "gay lobby", and in her bigoted mind, they are always a threat. They don't have "opinions" like Phillips herself, they have an "agenda", one that is a threat to "normal" people, and especially to their children.

6 November 2011 at 23:37  
Blogger Oswin said...

DanJo @ 20:49 : admit it, you like it here and have no desire to share. We're your secret lttle pleasure! :o)

6 November 2011 at 23:56  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7 November 2011 at 00:18  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Jon

You're reading of the post is a little bit defensive. Where is the suggestion about anti-semitism? That's a red herring and you know it.

You are a minority group but I accept your influence in 'normalising' the disordered is disproportionate and has grown in recent decades. People do get confused about discrimination and positive acceptance. The two are different.

If you're really concerned about young people being sexually confused then keep your alternative life style choice away from them.

My Church's position:

"This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition."

By rationalising the unacceptable and by going against the person's innate God given morality, proclaiming it as 'natural', you cause the conflict. The Catholic Medical Association in the USA has stated that same-sex attractions are preventable and a symptom of other issues.

If you choose this way of life fine, you shouldn't experience unjust discrimination, but do keep the confusion it brings away from our children and out of schools and off our television sets - and out of the Church.

Thankfully, the Catholic Church is now determined to stop the mixed messages some clerics were sending. After he became Pope, Benedict XVI, through the Congregation for Catholic Education, issued an "instruction" prohibiting any individuals who "present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called 'gay culture'", or any individuals having had such "tendencies" within the past three years, from entry to seminary, and from joining the priesthood.

Use your make-up and anti-aging potions and wear your colourful clothes. I'm sure capitalism thrives on the 'pink pound'. Stop the pretense that homosexuals are a poor down trodden group.

7 November 2011 at 00:22  
Blogger David B said...

Who would be left to perform sacraments in an ever more thinly spread, and ageing, priesthood if gay people were refused access to the priesthood, and those already in the priesthood were thrown out of it?

Sacraments might be spread pretty thinly.

David B

7 November 2011 at 00:41  
Blogger raggedclown said...

"Use your make-up and anti-aging potions and wear your colourful clothes. I'm sure capitalism thrives on the 'pink pound'. Stop the pretense that homosexuals are a poor down trodden group."

I believe Stonewall's bigot of the year award is based on popular nomination. You're going to have to try a bit harder for next year's award than this bitchy piece of stereotyping.

7 November 2011 at 01:06  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

raggedclown: "For her, they are never individuals, but always the faceless "gay lobby", and in her bigoted mind, they are always a threat. They don't have "opinions" like Phillips herself, they have an "agenda", one that is a threat to "normal" people, and especially to their children."

Spot on. And it sells papers like the Daily Mail.

7 November 2011 at 06:41  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Oswin: "DanJo @ 20:49 : admit it, you like it here and have no desire to share. We're your secret lttle pleasure! :o)"

That too. :)

Actually, His Grace pays me [1] to be the opposing side in debates as the resulting controversy helps boost his rating in the blog top 10s. I'm actually opposed to gay marriage in real life but it's such a popular topic with the more vocal Christians, almost the top one as it goes, that I've agreed to play devil's advocate (so to speak) every week when it comes up.

[1] a joke of course

7 November 2011 at 06:47  
Blogger bluedog said...

Mr DanJO @ 06.41 said, 'And it sells papers like the Daily Mail.'

Whereas Mr Jon @ 23.29 had said, 'It means I pretty much own the mainstream media'.

It would seem from Mr DanJO's admission that Mr Jon does not own the Daily Mail with a circulation of 2 million and a readership probably triple that.

Translation of Jon's boast: we have captured the Beeb.

What's new?

7 November 2011 at 09:37  
Blogger Jon said...

Dodo - it's interesting that you think that the Catholic medical association would be an impartial voice on this subject. Which is more important to them, I wonder, the Catholic part of their title or the Medical one? I think, from your quoting of their research, the rest of us can glean the answer!

As for the rest of your post, are you really going to try to convince anyone in their right mind that whatshisname on Coronation Street poses more of a threat to the well-being of the planet's children than your sex- deprived clergy, given recent (and not so recent) events? Don't be absurd you silly bird! You and your clergy have exercised a choice. Gay people are just living their lives, whatever your propaganda says.

DanJ0 - as ever, you are on the money!

7 November 2011 at 09:37  
Blogger Gary said...

Stonewall are anti-semites. Why listen to them!

7 November 2011 at 10:00  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Jon said, "Dodo - it's interesting that you think that the Catholic medical association would be an impartial voice on this subject. Which is more important to them, I wonder, the Catholic part of their title or the Medical one?"

A fair question. Conversely, Jon, it's interesting too that you may possibly think that the current official declarations on sexuality by secular medical and psychiatric associations are impartial. One may ask fairly, are their currently politically correct and legally fortified postures and officious declarations on the subject more important than the science? Is unhampered empirical research on these topics even possible today or has the "science" become "settled"? And at what cost to whom, and cui bono?

7 November 2011 at 11:20  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Jon

Why would Catholic doctors misrepresent the evidence? Would it matter to a Catholic if someone was genetically predisposed towards being homosexual or if it was a symptom of some other underlying problem? Either way, it's an 'objective disorder' to a Catholic and morally unacceptable.

7 November 2011 at 15:46  
Blogger Oswin said...

DanJo@ 06:47 :

Yes, I sensed that you had, seemingly reluctantly, chosen your place of combat, on an otherwise dismal field. Your heart wasn't really in it, was it? Again, at heart, you're quite a decent, reasonable bloke; whom, I suspect, doesn't really want to be forever kicking over the same old traces.

As I've ofentimes said before, it's that old 'stridency' thing: be they Christians, homosexuals or circus clowns, it helps no one.

7 November 2011 at 17:52  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8 November 2011 at 14:33  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

have just finished reading Melanie Phillips' excellent and disturbing new book 'World Turned Upside Down' in which, amongst other observations, she charts the strange partnership between leftist revolutionaries and Islam. 'The enemy of my enemy is my friend.'

It no surpise then that Stonewall should be gunning for her.

The paradox MP identififes is that liberal left attacks on our Judaeo Christian heritage will eventually lead to a moral vacuum and a societal collapse into which Islam will move. I wonder how Stonewall and their chums at the BBC and Guardian will respond to that?

8 November 2011 at 14:34  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9 November 2011 at 13:20  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Thanks for alerting me to Phillips' new book, Mr Appleseed. Just saw your profile, btw, and I must confess to being absolutely nuts, clinically even, over fresh-from-the-tree apples, especially the wild, unripe varieties. When on hikes with my family in Southern Ontario, I tend to take off crashing through old, abandoned farm orchards dating back to the 1800s, sampling fruit from every single tree and eating myself sick. Beats the "perfect" oversized and flavourless wet wood that's billed as apples in our supermarkets.

9 November 2011 at 13:24  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Rambling: "The paradox MP identififes is that liberal left attacks on our Judaeo Christian heritage will eventually lead to a moral vacuum and a societal collapse into which Islam will move."

You mis-spelled "imagines" there, I think.

9 November 2011 at 16:57  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

And yet, we have moved from the imaginary and speculative towards bona fide"laboratory" evidence in favour of this hypothesis, DanJO. In the US and now even here, in Canada, Islam is the fastest growing religion among the secularised dependants of the state in the welfare ghettoes and the prison systems. Just thought I'd throw this in for your further amusement.

9 November 2011 at 17:13  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Why is Islam growing there? New immigrants?

9 November 2011 at 17:32  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

And then some. Parts of Toronto and environs are reaching European-style enclave dimensions. On the positive side, though, the desire of most Muslims to chill and go on with their new life appears to be stronger here than in your neck of the woods. Time will tell.

9 November 2011 at 17:43  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

So if it's immigration then how is it affected by your "moral vacuum and a societal collapse" scenario? Do strong morals affects one's view on immigration or something? I have strong morals myself but I'm not necessarily against immigration. This is all very curious.

9 November 2011 at 17:53  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Work calls, but will respond in time.

9 November 2011 at 18:10  
Blogger Cotswold Quaker said...

Julian Mann, you say that for Stonewall, "Melanie Phillips's Jewishness is a significant contributing factor to her being voted Bigot of the Year". Your invoking a charge of antisemitism against Stonewall is deceitful and manipulative. Her views might or might not reflect a biblical interpretation of marriage which you and many Moslems have in common with MP. Christianity and Islam are the offspring of Judaism. I see that the bible is your favourite book. Anyone adhering uncritically to the biblical understanding of sexual practices will oppose lesbian and gay equality, marriage, etc. I wonder what other biblical practices you promote along with heterosexual marriage? There is quite a choice:
Killing men and women for adultery
"And the man that committeth adultery with another man's wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death" leviticus
Offering your daughters to be raped
"Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing";Genesis
If it is discovered that a bride is not a virgin, the Bible demands that she be executed by stoning immediately. Deuteronomy
If a man dies childless, his widow is ordered by biblical law to have intercourse with each of his brothers in turn until she bears her deceased husband a male heir.Mark
We Quakers do not adhere to scripture or creed but to a way of living because the words kill, the spirit gives life.
We have a saying you might find useful to contemplate...
Do you respect that of god in everyone though it may be expressed in unfamiliar ways or be difficult to discern? When words are strange or disturbing to you, try to sense where they come from. Avoid hurtful criticism and provocative language. Do not allow your convictions to betray you into making statements or allegations that are unfair or untrue. Think it possible that you may be mistaken?

8 February 2012 at 11:58  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Newer›  ‹Older